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Mazda Tribute Electrical Problems

tribute2004tribute2004 Posts: 3
edited July 2014 in Mazda
My 2003 Tribute has a problem where all the gauges short out . All gauges go from zero all the way over regardless of what speed you are going. Includes speedometer, tach, fuel, and tempt gauge. Been to the dealer and was given several costly options at what the problem might be. Anyone with same problem? What is the cure?



  • bigdog59bigdog59 Posts: 3
  • Mike,

    Thanks for the reply. No cause fo rthe problems as of yet. They told me it might be the battery. I had the battery tested and it tested fine. I replaced the battery and it still happens. Also was told it could be the coils, instrument panel or maybe replace the plugs. This was the best information they could find from their tech. If I replaced everything they suggested it would cost about $1700.00. What possible causes did your dealers give?


  • jrmazdajrmazda Posts: 1
    I experienced the same issue. It was a bad coil. Unfortunately it was on the backside of the engine so the manifold had to be dropped. I replaced the coils, wires and plugs while I had access to them. I replaced the other plugs and wires since I have over 113,000 miles on the 2003. It is strange that a could could do that, but it did fix it. The dealer was clueless.
  • first time posting, please bear with me. we have a 2001 Tribute that I recently replaced the alternator on ( kids, don't try this at home ) and now the stereo or dome or map lights do not work. i pulled the stereo out to check the ground wire and surprise, no ground. all of the fuses are fine but it still does not work. any info would be greatly appreciated as my girlfriend is tired of listening to me yell and curse at other drivers. thank you
  • This may already be posted somewhere, but I wasn't able to find it. I just bought a 2004 Tribute. It didn't come with the owners manual. Today, it kept beeping at me when I cranked it, but I didn't see anything lit on the control panel. It beeped about 5 times and then quit. I turned it off, checked the oil (which was fine) and cranked it again. It did the same thing the second time, still with no warning lights. Do any of you have an idea of what it could be?

  • I have the exact same problem with my 2003 Tribute and cannot figure out what the problem is... Have you had any luck figuring it out?

    The problem is exactly as you describe - when I turn on the engine, it makes 5 long beeps, pauses for a few moments, repeats the beeps, pauses and then repeats the beeps again. This happens every time I start the engine and will sometimes even come on when I have been driving a while (cc 30 mins). No warning lights, no other issues with the car. Just the beeps. Every time I turn the engine on.

    Did you get your's fixed?
  • I have a 2005 Mazda Tribute and it was running fine one day and then the next it was running really badly and wouldn't go over 40 mph. I had to have it towed to the dealership and they are saying that Mazda put out a memo to the dealerships about radio frequencies causing electrical problems. I have been told that according the to memo they have to replace all 6 coils and the PCN ($1900). This doesn't seem right since this isn't regular wear and tear on a vehicle. I can't control if my car is not protected from radio frequencies. Any one else have this story?
  • tomv3tomv3 Posts: 8
    Run away as fast as you can! Find another shop that will actually diagnose you problem. Tow it if you have to. Sudden performance problems after 6 years are not going to magically appear because of RF issues. Are you getting a check engine light code?
  • plasplas Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 tribute and mine would not go over 70 mph
    But I was getting a misfire in one cylinder and replacing the coil pack resigned the problem.
    So you may have a couple of coil packs going bad.
    My mileage was about 134000
  • daver6daver6 Posts: 1
    I also have a 2005 Tribute 3.0 V6 which recently developed a vibration when at cruise speed (1500-2000RPM). If I accellerate, the vibration disappears. But overall, it's not practicle to drive. I had my mechanic look at it and he said one ignition coil was bad (in front) which he replaced but also suspected the Engine Control Module (computer) was bad. I took it to the Mazda dealer and they said the only way to fix it was replace all 6 ignition coils (including the new one) and the ECM ($2000). After talking to several other mechanics, they suggest purchasing a used ECM with identical numbers and just replace it. I removed it, got the numbers (5L8A-12A650-LG), and now looking for a good used one. Anyone have similar experience or comments/suggestions?
  • My 2002 Mazda Tribute has served me well over the five years I have owned. Due to unforeseen circumstances with other cars, I have had to put roughly 120,000 miles on it the past 16 months. It is currently dead in my driveway at just over 200,000 miles. Last summer I had the transmission replaced and just recently had some computer work done on it. The latest problem is that it doesn't start. The engine briefly sounds like it wants to turn over but never does, then refuses to make any noise. All lights, radio and other accessories work perfectly. The battery was tested and charged fully and still no turn over.

    Is it the alternator?

    If it is, how the heck do you replace it? It seems like it is in the hardest position on the car known to mankind, :cry:

    Thanks for any help you all can get me.

  • tomv3tomv3 Posts: 8
    If your battery is charged then a faulty alternator is not going to give you starting problems. Have you considered the starter, or connections between the starter and battery? Whe you say 'refuses to make any noise' I am assuming the starter is not cranking.
  • As mechanically uniclined as I am, I have not consider much aside from what some people have told me it might be. Where is the starter located on the Mazda? Is it an easier fix then the alternator?
  • I have a 2005 Mazda Tribute with a Fuel tank filler door that won't open. Not sure what happened, it was working fine last time I used it. Today, I went to fill up and the lever at the base of the drivers seat would no longer open the door. Any advice? :cry:
  • Have had a 2001 Mazda Tribute V6 ES 4WD since 2002 (bought it coming off of a one-year lease.) Handles well. Powerful engine for a small SUV, but growls loudly. Internal wind-noise is excessive. Mileage started out around 24 hwy, then gradually dropped down to 19-20 hwy. Drivers door-latch mechanism (inside door) broke. Rear hatch door would not open (internal release froze up.) Rear hatch window wiper motor froze up. AC compressor stopped working. Black oxide began peeling off of luggage rack bars. Engine will sometimes accellerate unannounced (Mazda says this is a non-fixable problem.) And as of today, at 178,000 miles, the transmission gave out.....will not engage in any gear. Should I just drive it off of a cliff and find something else, or will it be worth the $2k to $3k to fix the tranny?
  • tomv3tomv3 Posts: 8
    How much longer before you have an engine problem that costs you about 2-3 thousand? With the high mileage and 10 years of time on the rubber and electrical parts, I would save my money for a newer vehicle. Years ago (1994) I spent $2500 on a rebuilt engine for a 10 yr old station wagon with a lot fewer miles that your Tribute has. I got rid of it 3 years later. In retrospect the money should have gone into a newer car.
  • okay...I think my car is having possession issues.or as I'd rather believe, I'm having angel visitors! About 10:15pm last nite I went to close my bedroom curtains and could see my car....the headlights were on! Now, this is the 2nd time this has happened and in a minte they go off...I still used my remote and re-locked it just in case. Besides that, my radio has started blaring out of no where when I turn the car on..............doo...doo..doo​................
  • I had the same problem at about 70k miles and had to replace the alternator and YES it took over 5 hours for them to replace it and had to take everything off of the right side of the car to get to it. He had expected a 2 hr job. I now am having to replace the steering rack and also the gaskets for the engine. I have less than 90k on the car right now. It is a 2004 and I drive less than 10k per year. I have owned 6 Hondas and NEVER had to do anything to them I am DISGUSTED that Ford cannot do any better in building a car that cannot last even a 100k. I hope you got yours fixed. I also have LOTS of electrical issues in the dash. ( cruise, dash lights, etc etc)
  • jaymaljjaymalj Posts: 2
    edited November 2012
    Hi my wife was driving our 2005 tribute yesterday when the engine light came on and then the cruise control stopped working and finally the interior electrics went out like the radio and speedometer and the gauges. It wound up dying on the interstate and the battery sparked badly when jumper cables were attached to the battery. Any ideas as what would cause this to occur?
  • jaymaljjaymalj Posts: 2
    edited November 2012
    How difficult is it to replace the alternator on a 2005 tribute and what has to be taken off or removed to get to it?
  • I have had an alternator going out for the last year. Finally I replaced it and everything started working like it was a brand new car. Lights were brighter, ac was colder, car accelerated faster brakes were back to normal. I was having problems with the ABS brakes wanting to engage all the time pre - alternator repair. After the repair all issues were fixed except I had three misfiring cylinders now it's down to one misfiring. Cylinder #4. And after the repair my headlamps wouldn't work. The driving lights were fine but for lamps and head lamps were a no go. Checked the bulbs, they were fine and the fuses. There was zero power getting to the fuses so we realized I had a bad relay. Replaced the relay and now everything works. I have to do a tune up and fix the misfiring cylinder and find my oil leak that is evident from the oil on the spark plugs and I also have an engine coolant leak. So ill update the info about this once we work out these problems.
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